SOCCERSPORTS

Late heroics in weekend split for soccer

The Minnesota State women’s soccer team was back at home Friday to take on the University of Central Missouri. 

The Mavericks grabbed a late winner in the final minute of the match on their way to a 1-0 victory over the Jennies. 

The match was physical and tightly contested. In the second half, the Mavs were forced to be resolute at the back as the Jennies pressured them for long spells. Mavs goalkeeper Mackenzie Rath faced 17 shots and made three saves for her 25th career shutout. 

“With all their speed they have up top we wanted to make sure they didn’t get behind us, and outside of maybe one or two times I thought we really did an excellent job of that today. We’ve got a great great goalkeeper and felt like she’d be able to hold down the fort if we just didn’t allow anybody to get in behind us,” said head coach Brian Bahl. 

Despite the Jennies dominating play and being on the front foot for most of the second half, the Mavs were able to flip the script in the final minutes. The Mavs pinned the Jennies back a bit and created chances. Shortly after a corner kick from the Mavs, Kiera Laney was on the ball and played it through to Avery Korsching who slotted it home with 34 seconds left. It was Korsching’s first career game-winning goal and third goal overall this season. 

“Our game plan in the second half was to become a little more direct and skip some lines. I think we were able to finally get on the end of some second ball late there and it opened things up for us to get some chances,” Bahl said. “We knew they were being really aggressive pushing for the goal to get the win and I thought we could catch them high and we did. It was a great effort by our kids though. Kind of a bend-but-don’t-break mentality. Fight and claw until we got an opportunity and we never gave up. We found a way to get it done. So, huge win.” 

Emotions spilled over for the Jennies head coach after the match and he received a red card for his complaints to the referee. Things got heated between himself and the referee when the Jennies felt they should have had a penalty kick in the first half, but the referee was adamant it was a clean tackle in the penalty box. 

“Obviously I’m on the opposing side. I can see why he’s asking for it but it was a clear great tackle, then she won the ball,” Bahl said. 

The Mavs weren’t able to carry on the momentum from Friday’s game to Sunday, in a 1-0 home defeat to Grand Valley State. 

This match was also scoreless well into the second half until the Lakers were awarded a penalty kick after a Maverick player was called for a handball in the 73rd minute. Kacy Lauer scored it to give the Lakers the lead. It was her first career penalty kick goal and second goal of the season. 

This was the Mavs’ first loss of the season, however, Bahl thought his team played well enough to win the game. 

“Hate this result for our ladies. They competed so hard, with so much heart today and executed what we wanted so well. To have it come down to a PK is really tough and super unfortunate. We created a lot of quality chances and did a great job of limiting the quality looks they got. We were good enough to get the win, just didn’t go our way,” Bahl said. 

Next up for the Mavs is a trip to Sioux Falls, South Dakota for their next game against Augustana Friday.   

Header Photo: A weekend of firsts. MSU’s Avery Korsching with her first career game-winning goal and Grand Valley State’s Kacy Lauer’s first career penalty kick goal. (Lilly Anderson/The Reporter)

Write to Mohamed Warsame at mohamed.warsame@mnsu.edu

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